We are a team of researchers studying animal cognition. In 2015, we began research with two otter species in Leipzig Zoo - giant otters (Pteronura brasiliensis) and Asian small-clawed otters (Aonyx cinerea). Otters show various characteristics associated with complex cognition, such as long lifespans, complex social systems, communication systems and tool-use. They also vary between (and in some cases within) species in their sociality, foraging behaviour and living environment, thus providing an opportunity to investigate the relationship between this variation and their cognitive skills.
We presented our first study on cooperation and coordination at the Behaviour 2015 in Cairns, Australia, and the paper is currently under review. Since then, we have conducted several new studies about object permanence, string pulling and flexibility in problem solving. At the moment, we are planning to broaden the comparison with more species in more locations.
On this website, we want to present our work and published results, as well as some very cute photos of our participants.
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